Choki Wangmo | Tsirang  

With the finals played between Gelephu LMG and Bhutan Red Cross Tsirang at the Damphu football ground yesterday, the selection process of players for Tsirang Football Club is finally over.

LMG Gelephu won the match scoring two goals. This could mean that all the players from the winning team could be selected to play for the club.

Vice president of the newly formed club, Uttam Basnet said, “We are selecting 42 best players for the team. Most of them are young and might leave if they get better opportunities. So we are planning to pay them well.”

The club already has a coach and a physiotherapist, according to the vice president.

In May last year, the association selected 30 players from the dzongkhag league but half of them left for other opportunities.

He said that the club members are looking to select players between the age of 19 and 20. According to spectators, the players from Wangdue had more tactical skills.

Once the team is formed, Tsirang will have its team playing in the qualifying round of the Bhutan Premier League which is expected to begin in April. The club plans to train the players in the next two months.

First of its kind in the dzongkhag, 10 business owners from Damphu established the club. “We are interested in football and we want the younger generations to enjoy the game and have a club of their own,” Uttam Basnet said.  The club was registered with the Bhutan Football Federation which provided the club with the seed money.

A player of LMG Gelephu, Tenzin Tshering, said that he was hopeful that all of his team members would be selected to play for the club. “Most of them are unemployed and would be willing to play full-time.”

Some, he said, played for other clubs in the past. Phurpa Tenzin from his team scored both the goals yesterday. The team won a cash prize of Nu 50,000. Red Cross Tsirang was awarded a cash prize of Nu 30,000.

More than 200 young men in 12 teams from Tsirang, Sarpang, Dagana, and Wangdue participated in the open tournament. Most of them are high school graduates. Each team with 18 players paid an entrance fee of Nu 15,000.

The dzongkhag is also preparing to select women players for the National Women’s League.